Bitcoin Widow Wins $270,000 Settlement After Bank Blocks Deposit

Zinger Key Points
  • Bitcoin widow's $270,000 settlement leaves her still empty-handed.
  • State's new mechanism for transferring funds from abroad may help Freeman access her profits.

Esther Freeman, a pensioner who earned approximately $270,000 from Bitcoin BTC/USD investments, had her lawsuit against Bank Hapoalim dismissed nearly two years after alleging the bank refused her deposit of the cryptocurrency profits.

Both parties reached an agreement, stating that "after a conversation between the plaintiff and the defendant bank, they reached an agreement according to which the lawsuit against Bank Hapoalim will be dismissed, and each party will bear its own expenses."

The Tel Aviv District Court's Judge Limor Bibi sanctioned the agreement on Sunday, CTech reported.

Also Read: Cryptic Messages And $73M In Outflows: Authorities Apprehend, Detain Huobi Execs

Freeman's initial investment in Bitcoin was NIS 10,000 in 2013, based on family advice.

By July 2021, when Bitcoin was trading at around $58,000, she sought to convert some of her holdings into fiat currency.

Reflecting on her investment journey, Freeman remarked, "I listened to my son and nephews and decided to give it a shot. I never dreamed that NIS 10,000 could become almost NIS 1 million."

However, Bank Hapoalim declined her deposit request, citing her cash purchase of Bitcoin, which made it impossible to verify the money's origin.

The bank emphasized the inherent risks of digital currencies, stating, "The characteristics of digital currencies allow for them to be transferred in an anonymous and unregulated manner... this is an activity that carries a high risk of anti-money laundering and terror financing."

In its defense, the bank further clarified that it adheres to the Supervisor of Banks' stance on not accepting funds from virtual currencies due to potential misuse for money laundering and terrorist financing.

The bank also highlighted that Freeman's Bitcoin purchase was from an individual, not a regulated entity, making it challenging to trace the funds.

"The bank acted from the beginning in accordance with its obligations according to law, including the Anti-Money Laundering Law," attorney Shaul Zioni representing Freeman, noted that the lawsuit became irrelevant for various reasons.

He also mentioned the state's recent commitment to establish a mechanism for transferring funds from abroad for tax purposes.

Whether Freeman was able to deposit her earnings remains unclear.

Read Next: As Bitcoin Bears Rampage, Solana And Other Altcoins See Inflows

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Posted In: CryptocurrencyNewsTop StoriesMarketsanti-money launderingBank HapoalimBanking RegulationsBitcoin Lawsuitcrypto investmentDigital AssetsEsther FreemanTel AvivVirtual Currency
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